Holy Cross part of solar, hydropower study

An electricity cooperative based in Glenwood Springs is one of three Colorado utilities that will be part of a study to quantify the economic effects on power providers from linking rooftop solar energy and small hydropower plants into the grid.

Holy Cross Energy will be a partner in what is the first such study of its kind in Colorado, said the Governor’s Energy Office, also a partner in the study.

Fort Collins Light and Power and the San Luis Valley Rural Electric Cooperative also are participating.

The study complements legislation passed this year requiring Colorado’s investor-owned utilities to generate 30 percent of their electricity from renewable power. Three percent must come from distributed systems such as rooftop solar and small hydropower.

“Typically, adding distributed generation using the sun, water or wind can benefit utilities by reducing or delaying the need to build additional, and costly, utility-scale power plants and transmission,” the Governor’s Energy Office said in a news release.

It also can reduce the need to purchase more costly electricity from other sources during times of peak use, the energy office said.


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